Romans Lesson 1 Day 5
My answers to BSF Bible study questions
In Romans 1:16-17, Paul introduces the theme of his letter: the righteousness of God, as revealed in the gospel of Jesus Christ. (Guzik)
In the Roman Empire, Crucifixion was the most humiliating way to execute a criminal — something to be ashamed of.
12. Yet Paul is not embarrassed by the gospel—
The Greek word “EUAGGELION,” which was translated “gospel” in this verse, was used seventy-seven times in the New Testament in seventy-four verses. It was translated “gospel” seventy-four times and “gospel’s” three times. It means “good message” or “good news” (Vine’s Expository Dictionary). But it actually means more than that. This Greek word was so seldom used that I only found two examples of its usage outside of the Bible. The reason for that was because it really means the nearly-too-good-to-be-true news. And there is precious little outside of the news of what Jesus did for us that is nearly-too-good-to-be-true news. But when Jesus took all of our sin and paid the debt we owed and then gave us new life, that was nearly too good to be true. So, this word became correctly associated with the salvation Jesus provided for us. (Andrew Wommack’s Living Commentary) (emphasis added)
Paul isn’t “the least bit embarrassed about the gospel” because “it is God’s power to save every person who believes.” (Voice)
It’s good news! — “God’s restorative justice is revealed!” (Voice)
“…first the Jew, and then the non-Jew.” (Voice) The word first means before as in the first in a sequence. Not first in importance.”
13. Sometimes I’m embarrassed
Paul had more reasons to be embarrassed about the gospel than I will ever have. He was born into a Jewish family, educated by Jewish leaders, and held the esteemed position of a Pharisee.
Paul displayed his zeal for God’s law by persecuting followers of Jesus.
He completely turned away from that heritage and office when he decided to follow Jesus, the man killed in the most humiliating fashion by his former friends, family, and colleagues. Paul gave it all up to follow Jesus.
I was born into a Christian family in a Christian nation. Many of the nations’ talking heads, political leaders, and activists have turned against Christianity.
The gospel isn’t cool” or popular. The media often ridicules “Christians” and sometimes rightly so. I don’t like being identified with the unloving, un-Christlike crowd who disrupts the funerals of military casualties of war, ridicules sinners, etc.—The ones who behave more like the self-righteous Pharisees who crucified Jesus.
14. Forever grateful for the good news gospel
The challenge is, the world believes Christians should be all about love and compassion like Mother Theresa, and many of the “Christians” think the world should clean up its act. As a friend of mine recently said,
“I fear that the majority of the church thinks that the gospel is like the Pinocchio story – someone comes and breathes life into you but ‘the rest is up to you.'” Kristen
When Jesus showed up in all His glory, Paul was undone. He realized how unrighteous he was and how much he needed grace.
None of my good deeds qualify me for the new birth. My parents’ salvation doesn’t qualify me and neither does my great-great grandfather’s. Jesus paid my debt. That’s good news, and I’m forever grateful.
15. My takeaways on this lesson
- Romans is a book about God. God is mentioned 153 times. Once every 46 words—more frequently than in any other book in the New Testament.
- As my friend, Jeremy, recently said, “I sincerely hope my life’s actions are the loudest, most resounding statement of what I stand for and what I believe.”
I’ve often wanted a name change based on my destiny the way Sarai/Sarah, Abram/Abraham, Simon/Peter, and Saul/Paul did. John’s Revelation also includes references to the names God has for us—
I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one understands except the one who receives it. (Revelation 2:17c NLT)
I will inscribe this person with the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, New Jerusalem—which descends out of heaven from My God—and My own new name. (Revelation 3:12 Voice)
MY answers — not THE answers — to BSF study questions on Romans Lesson 1 Day 5 ~ Romans 1:16-17